The Believer

The Believer

by Rhett Miller



More than three years have gone by since Rhett Miller released his last solo album -- a period that saw contemporary Ryan Adams practically fill the bed of a pickup with new material -- but with The Believer, the Old 97's frontman proves himself worth waiting for. Miller plays to his strengths here, displaying his emotional wounds without outright flaunting them. Knowing how to walk that line gives Miller the ability to elicit empathy, rather than pity, on songs like the poignant title track, a eulogy of sorts to Elliott Smith, and "Fireflies," a duet with Rachael Yamagata. Thanks to a tumult-free stretch of personal life -- he's happily married these days, helping raise a toddler son in upstate New York -- Miller doesn't have quite as much to pine over these days, a fact that makes some of the disc's songs a bit too sweet at first taste. But he offsets that with his knack for rolling out pop-rock ditties -- like "Help Me, Suzanne" -- so crystal-clear that they could pass muster on a Brill Building retrospective. Heck, he even kicks out the jams -- a mode he usually reserves for his time in the 97's -- on the bluesy rocker "Ain't It Strange." That's something that's easy to believe in.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/28/2006
Label: Verve Forecast
UPC: 0602498867068
catalogNumber: 000561602

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Rhett Miller   Primary Artist,Vocals,Hand Clapping
Jon Brion   Organ,Guitar,Piano,Bass Guitar,Electric Guitar,chamberlain
Matt Chamberlain   Percussion,Drums
George Drakoulias   Guitar,Percussion,Piano,Tambourine,Hand Clapping,Shaker
Gary Louris   Guitar,Background Vocals,Soloist
Patrick Warren   Keyboards,chamberlain
Lyle Workman   Guitar,Electric Guitar
Rossilind Ross Miller   Vocals
Josh Schwartz   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Rachael Yamagata   Vocals
Salim Nourallah   Bass,Vocals
Danny DeLaMatyr   Vocals,Background Vocals
Salim Nouraliah   Bass Guitar

Technical Credits

Aimee Mann   Composer
David Bianco   Engineer
George Drakoulias   Producer,Audio Production
Jerry Marotta   Composer
Matthew Cullen   Engineer
Rhett Miller   Composer
Hollis King   Art Direction
Rafael Serrano   Engineer
Ken Bethea   Composer
Philip Peeples   Composer
Vaughn Acord   grooming

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The Believer 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rhett Miller's second solo effort is nothing short of spectacular. The arrangements on "the Believer" are a lot different than his previous solo outing "The Instigator", complete with stings, organ and even featuring talented young songstress Rachel Yamagata on the haunting ballad "Fireflies". Old 97's fans fear not, amidst the lush sound there are still traces of rock n roll to be found. The stomp romp of "Delicate" feautring a chorus audiences are sure to shout at live shows, as well as the glam rock of "Ain't That Strange" give "The Believer" a punch of rebellion. The title track is the most poignant, the song is a reflection on Miller's youth, as well as a memorial to the late great singer-songwriter Elliott Smith. There are a few tracks that Old 97's fans might recognize, "Fireflies", "Singular Girl", and a new arrangement of the female fan favorite "Question". While some fans of the Old 97's might brush these songs off as a rehashing of old material, I think the new arrangments give new life to the songs. "The Believer" is 12 songs full of love, sex, optimisim as well as rock n roll.